It’s a great time to sell your home if you live on the West Coast. Not so much for East Coasters.
According to data released this week by real estate website Zillow, San Francisco and San Jose are the nation’s two hottest housing markets. The coldest housing market: Baltimore.
To do the study, Zillow looked at how long the average house was listed in major cities in the U.S. and what percentage of listings had price cuts.
Houses in San Francisco averaged 51 days on the market, and only 5.4% of the homes listed there had to cut their price before finding a buyer. That compares to 90 days nationwide, with 9.4% of all listings getting marked down. In San Jose, houses only stayed on the market for 50 days, but buyers were slightly more likely to have to lower their price.
The biggest surprise in the survey was Denver. It came in as No. 3 on the rankings of the hottest housing markets, with the average house selling in just 57 days. Another surprise was that one of the coldest housing markets in the U.S. was Miami, which was one of the biggest participants in last decades housing boom, and bust.
The gap between the housing have and have not markets is pretty wide these days as well. In Baltimore, for instance, it takes the average home owner more than three months, or 104 days to find a buyer, and nearly 13% of sellers have to hang "Recently Reduced" signs on their listings.
More broadly, the housing market in the east seems to be lagging behind the west. The top eastern city in Zillow's ranking was Boston, at No. 9. California is doing especially well for homeowners, accounting for five of the hottest markets, with Los Angeles, Sacramento, and San Diego rounding out that group. Houses in the state are also the most expensive in the nation. The median price for a home in San Francisco is $828,700, Houses in San Jose average a whopping $963,700. Throughout the rest of the U.S. that figure is $193,800. The numbers tend to favor markets that are experiencing strong job growth, which attracts newcomers to the area and causes a bump in housing demand.
Not surprisingly, then, is that six of the top ten cities for buyers are the on the east coast, with Florida hosting three of them. In addition to Miami, the markets in Tampa and Orlando have been tough on sellers. Chicago, Indianapolis, and Detroit were also included on this list, indicating the heartland also seems to be struggling to move houses.
Zillow also polled 111 housing experts. The majority of them expecting home sales to become a buyer’s market again in 2018 or 2019. The annual increase in home values is expected to slow to 3.5% by the end of the year, compared to the nearly 7% appreciation homeowners are currently experiencing, which is a major factor in the anticipated shift from a seller’s market to a buyer’s market.